Black Pearl Jewellery
Want to make a stunning fashion statement, then check out Black Pearl Jewellery. So beautiful and so easy to wear with fashion pieces for everyday wear and for that special occasion!
Black pearls or Tahitian pearls as they are also known are the black gems of the jewellery world. Black pearls have always been considered to be rare and extremely valuable, but they were not as appealing to the market appeal as white pearls due to buyer ignorance. They are now regarded as the pearls in highest demand in the contemporary jewellery market. Although known as black pearls the range of colours and tones make them highly desirable and collectable providing endless pleasure to the wearer.
Where Do Black Pearls Come From?
Originally the pure waters of the islands of French Polynesia were the natural home of the black-lipped oyster Pinctada marguritifera which produces the black pearl. After harvesting they all also known as Tahitian pearls. Only natural (uncultured) pearls were produced until the late 1960’s and so they were very rare. From that date pearl farming was introduced and the volume and size of black pearls increased.
How are Black Pearls Formed?
The Pinctada marguritifera has a unique colouration not found in other pearl-producing oysters or mussels. It’s predominant body color is black, but it can also feature distinct washes of blue, green, or purple. It’s these oil slick overtones that make every black Tahitian pearl unique.
In the wild, a pearl is formed when an external irritant gets lodged in the oyster’s soft membrane. To isolate the irritant, the oyster begins forming layer upon layer of a mother-of-pearl substance called nPearl. Farmers try to imitate this wonder of nature by surgically inserting an irritant into the oyster’s membrane, usually a small bead made out of shell or plastic. This is called the nucleus. Then the oysters are diligently cared for and monitored while the nacre forms around it. This process can take between one and two years, sometimes longer.
Once harvested, black Tahitian pearls can display a stunning array of color. Many are black with overtones of blue, peacock green, pewter, or cherry. Some will be lighter in color, allowing vivid blue and green tones to shine through. Some Tahitian pearls are a beautiful stormy silver color blended with smoke greys or the pale green that’s often called “pistachio”.
Every single black pearl has its own unique characteristics, though they’re unified by their deep, high-contrast body colors and iridescent luster. This builds up around the intrusion and becomes a pearl.
How can you tell if a black pearl is real?
Pearls are natural gemstones and as such they are never perfectly round or perfectly smooth. They all have little variations in surface texture with minute nicks and slight lumps. These are often referred to as the pearl’s fingerprints. These imperfections, or distinguishing characteristics, are visible in even the highest quality pearl strands.
Are black pearls more rare than other pearls?
Black pearls are some of the rarest pearls in the world along with Golden South Sea pearls. One of the reasons is the time it takes for the oyster to produce a pearl, which is up to three to four years. Consequently there are fewer of them becoming available for sale. The wide spectrum of colours and shades mean that some colours are in higher demand than others.
Are black pearls graded?
To ensure consistency of quality all black pearls are graded using the GIA pearl grading scale of size, shape, luster, color, surface quality, and nacre. The perfect pearl would ideally be perfectly round with smooth, unblemished surfaces, intense and eye-catching colors, and sharp, high-contrast reflections. Such specimens are extremely rare and priced accordingly. Pearls are priced according to size with the larger and highest quality pearls commanding higher prices than smaller ones.
Types of Black Pearl Jewellery
Black Pearl Rings
Black pearl rings or Tahitian Black Pearl rings are generally set in gold or platinum to highlight the beauty of the pearl. The nature of these exotic gemstones is ideal as the centrepiece of a ring and the perfect piece of jewellery to show off the iridescent layers and secondary colours of the pearl.
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Black Pearl Earrings
Black Pearl Earrings or Tahitian Black Pearl earrings add a touch of the spectacular to any outfit especially white or pastel shades. You can choose from a vast range of styles and sizes, from single pearl earrings to drop earrings and other fashion statements.
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Black Pearl Pendants
Black Pearl Pendants or Tahitian Black Pearl Pendants are an ideal adornment to any lady’s jewellery outfits. A pendent is a fabulous way to show off the grandeur and beauty of black pearls with being to flashy or ostentatious. The elegant beauty of these natural gemstones allows for very simple mounting to show it off.
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Black Pearl Strands
Black Pearl Strands of pearls are probably the ultimate way to demonstrate the intrinsic beauty of this gorgeous natural gemstone. A skillful jeweller will match each pearl in the strand to produce a beautiful and consistent colour, hue and lustre. Strands of pearls are the traditional way to showcase pearls.
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Black Pearl Necklace
Black Pearl Necklaces allow pearls to be worn and displayed in full view but in a less formal manner than Black Pearl Strands. Necklaces can often comprise of round pearls, but also the free flowing nature of them lends them to made from Baroque pearls. Baroque pearls are often associated with “fun” jewellery and many designers love to work with them
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How do I know if my black pearl has been colour treated?
Because black pearls are very valuable for their size some makers dye white pearls to make them more valuable. A naturally coloured black pearl size range from 10mm and larger, therefore if the pearl you are offered is any smaller than it is probably a treated freshwater or Akoya pearl. If you are unsure refer to a reputable jeweller.
Jill Hansen runs Anastasia’s Of Broome and is a highly recognised expert is the field of South Sea Pearls having trained in seeding pearls in Cook Islands by Japanese Pearl Technicians. She established a wholesale pearl business selling pearls all over the world. Jill pioneered the combination of pearls and diamonds to create Lust™ Pearls, a unique fusion of these beautiful gemstones. She is an accredited diamond expert and is happy to use and impart her knowledge to help customers make informed decisions.